JOHOR BAHRU: The domestic trade and cost of living ministry (KPDN) will be introducing the “Payung Rahmah” initiative to reduce the cost of living for the lower-income group (B40) and hardcore poor.
Its minister, Salahuddin Ayub said the initiative is the result of cooperation with several ministries, including the economic affairs ministry, and the agriculture and food security ministry.
“The details of the initiative will be announced on Tuesday. The concept of ‘Payung Rahmah’ is part of KPDN’s short-term strategy for the next six months.
“It will be tough on the B40 and hardcore poor who may be hard hit if we don’t deal with it (rising cost of living) carefully and give it the necessary focus.
“We have to take such action as I fear the global economic situation is expected to be serious this year and will have an even greater impact on them,” he told reporters after an event in Pulai last night.
The Pulai MP said the initiative included giving food baskets, having ‘Rahmah Kasih Sayang’ cheap sales comprising a package of 10 items, and setting up Cafe Rahmah for university students.
Meanwhile, Salahuddin said the ministry will be announcing a price control scheme next week in view of the upcoming Chinese New Year festival.
When asked if there was a possibility that face masks would be placed as a controlled item following the opening of China’s border, he said it had not been decided so far.
“The Cabinet discussed last Wednesday on the need to increase the level of security and the health ministry has been assigned to ensure the right restrictions are in place at all entry points without compromise.
“Nevertheless, there is no official decision yet on whether face masks will be included (as a controlled item). That depends on the need at the time and we will make a decision then,” he said.